A road that crosses historic towns and multi-color lands: Talampaya National Park and Laguna Brava; olive groves, vineyards and walnuts.
The mythical Route 40, the longest and most spectacular road in Argentina, unites the country from South to North for as long as 3,320 miles from Cabo Vírgenes –in the province of Santa Cruz- to La Quiaca –in the province of Jujuy. It crosses La Rioja at some of the most intense sites. It passes by Villa Unión –the departure point for the tours to Talampaya National Park (Mankind Heritage) and Laguna Brava’s Provincial Reserve; it climbs the imposing Miranda’s Slope –in Chilecito, and crosses the towns of Famatina and San Blas de los Sauces.
The town of Villa Unión is one of the most important service centers at the Bermejo Valley, the corridor where the Talampaya National Park (Mankind Heritage) is located. From this town, tours depart to Laguna Brava’s Provincial Reserve (to the North), an actual paradise of mineral colors, pink flamingos and vicuña herds.
Miranda’s Slope, a beautiful mountain road surrounded by huge cardons (=species of cactus from Chile, Argentina and Bolivia), connects by Route #40 the towns of Villa Unión and Nonogasta, crossing very picturesque villages where time seems to have stopped. At the feet of Famatina hills, in Sañogasta, Argentine most delicious nuts can be tasted. The walnuts landscape crosses all the town, ascending and descending, until reaching San Sebastián church, one of the oldest in La Rioja. In Famatina, the landscape’s beauty is complemented by adventure tourism proposals like trekking, mountaineering and paragliding. When Route 40 joins Route 147, at Nonogasta, the scenario becomes full of vineyards. To make a stop and enjoy the exquisite fresh Torrontés wine is a pleasure that the traveler will certainly appreciate. A bit further, Chilecito is waiting with its historic and cultural attractions. Finally, at the Northern extreme of the Velasco Hills, limiting with Famatina in the South and the province of Catamarca in the North, San Blas de los Sauces expects visitors with their tasty peaches and unequalled olives.
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